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Old 10-19-2018, 08:26 AM   #1
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Question Freeze Prevention On Jayco 175RD Baja?

Hi,
My first post here, so let me know if I'm rehashing anything.

Wife and I just purchased a new Jayco Flight SLX 7 175RD with the Baja option. Love the trailer, as it's mostly my Man-Cave Trailer. It has a sealed underbelly FYI.

I had it out for its maiden voyage dry camping in Eastern Oregon and it got down to 21 degrees overnight. I got up early to make coffee and was horrified that I had no water - nowhere. It had frozen. It warmed up within a few hours and I plugged into shore water when I got home and looked for leaks - nothing found fortunately. I may have dodged a bullet.

So the question is, how could it have frozen the pipes if it has the underbelly? Or better yet, how do I make it so it won't freeze again in a similar situation? And yes, I had the furnace running on and off all night.

Thanks in advance,
-Tom
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Old 10-19-2018, 09:02 AM   #2
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Wow, that is surprising, based on what I've gleaned from similar subject-area threads here and elsewhere that I've read recently. Only tip I recall from those that might help in your situation is to leave cabinet doors open that have plumbing behind them, i.e., mainly for where your water pump is. Our water pump on the 267BHSW is under the kitchen sink and has a luan plywood divider which would probably need to be removed (mine was just loose in there from the factory so it comes out no problem!) to allow air circulation to actually get back to the water pump. An older trailer I had before had the water pump under a bunk bed at the rear of the trailer so that would have been hard to get any warm air circulation to. Anyway, will be interested to hear if/how you resolve this issue.
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Old 10-19-2018, 09:05 AM   #3
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Welcome to the forum and congratulations on the TT.

I looked online at the Jayco site and didn't see the 'Thermal Package' as an option, but maybe that is part of the Baja Option or the online info is wrong. Anyway, with the Thermal Package there is a heat duct that should go into the underbelly. It's possible that it was not installed or installed incorrectly. The dealer should check that issue.

Also...
You said it "warmed up after a few hours". Were you still running the furnace? Did you have 12v power in the morning after running the furnace at night? Is it possible there was too little 12v power left to run the water pump with the furnace running? Fans - like the one for the furnace - eat a huge amount of 12v power. If you have the OEM 12v battery, you could have had a low battery issue. Monitoring battery power is something you'll need to become comfortable with for dry camping.

Please let us know what you find.
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Old 10-19-2018, 09:18 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldmanAZ View Post
Were you still running the furnace? Did you have 12v power in the morning after running the furnace at night? Is it possible there was too little 12v power left to run the water pump with the furnace running?
* Yep, was still running the furnace.
* Yep, still had 12v power in the morning.
* Don't think there was too little 12v power. I do not have a volt meter on it yet, but the water pump sounded normal - just no water was flowing!

That's a great suggestion to open the cupboards, which I'll try next time.
-Tom
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Old 10-19-2018, 09:22 AM   #5
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Thanks, Tom.
Obviously this isn't your first camping 'rodeo'.
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Old 10-19-2018, 01:11 PM   #6
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If your SLX is like my 195RB the water is routed under the floor to the pump area and then up through the floor. My heater is a simple model that pulls in air and blows it right back out the front. There are no heat ducts under the floor on my 195. If there are no heat ducts down there then heat coming down through the floor will not be enough to keep the line warm enough to not freeze if it gets cold enough over a long enough period.
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Old 10-19-2018, 05:16 PM   #7
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Dang, sounds like I'm out of luck then.
-Tom
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Old 10-19-2018, 07:47 PM   #8
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Do your specs say "Thermal Package" and "heated and enclosed underbelly"? I would expect one or both but am just curious.
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Old 10-19-2018, 07:56 PM   #9
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RogerR is correct - there is no heat in the enclosed underbelly on the SLX7 units. On the 195RB units I know the line from the fresh water tank to the pump is run under the floor. A portion of the line to the toilet may also be routed that way. While the enclosed underbelly helps without a heat source it's still a problem when it dips below freezing for any length of time.
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:20 PM   #10
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No, does not say 'heated', just 'enclosed underbelly'. Methinks I'm out of luck and will just need to be wary. Too bad there's no way to modify it to heat the underbelly.
-Tom
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Old 10-20-2018, 08:36 AM   #11
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For the record, my 22BHM has the Baja package. As others have mentioned, there isn't a heat duct to the enclosed underbelly (our entire heat system is neatly packaged under the kitchen cabinets and is easy to see the routing). Our low point drains and black and grey valves are also exposed.

With that said, we have camped on multiple occasions down in that 18-20 degree range without issues. However, that is with daytime temps going well above freezing. I wouldn't try and push extended temps much below that mid 20's range without winterizing.
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Old 10-21-2018, 12:42 AM   #12
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We have a 2016 Whitehawk 24RKS.

https://www.nadaguides.com/RVs/2016/.../6552373/Specs

Ours froze up last Sunday night while we were about 10 miles south of Chemult OR. I was not expecting it to be as cold as it got. I am not sure if our enclosed "basement" is heated or not. We had cold water in the bathroom sink and toilet. No hot water anywhere and no cold or hot water in the kitchen sink. I pulled out the drawer under the frig where I found the water lines opened the cabinet door under the kitchen sink where the hot water tank is. I turned the pump off, told the wife to check for leaks when she turns it back on and went on my excursion. (We did have cell service at the trailer)

When I got back all was thawed out and working fine. No leaks, lucky for us.

The only thing that I can think of that caused this kind of freeze up is under the frig, outside of the sealed belly of the trailer is about 6" of uninsulated water tubing cold/hot and the low point drain valves. Me thinks that the exposed tubing started to freeze and also froze up the line to the hot and cold lines that were behind the cabinets that did not get much heat. Just my guess as to what happened. You can bet that I pipe wrap those exposed water lines in a few days.

When I went into Chemult to get gas and water on Wednesday, I asked how cold it had gotten on Sunday night? The gas station attendant at Pilot looked at me with wide eyes and said, " 8 degrees. It went from the mid 70's to 8 degrees in a few hours."
I have never tried to check what he said, but it was cold.

Sorry about writing a book. HAPPY CAMPING!!!
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